Seismic Data Processing

by Steve Hill

Duration: Two days

Intended Audience: Entry level

Prerequisites (Knowledge/Experience/Education Required): The course is designed for both geologists and geophysicists. Geophysical research scientists are also welcome, especially those who have not mastered this broad field. The course assumes no knowledge of seismic geophysics. The course makes use of numerous illustrations to provide intuition for the underlying (mostly hidden) mathematics.

The SEG "Introduction to Seismic Processing" course is just that; it is an introductory course designed for individuals who work with seismic data. Seismic interpreters are the primary audience. Understanding the origin of interpretable seismic data assists you in understanding the data's potential and its possible pitfalls for the unwary. The course is also of value for seismic acquisition specialists who desire to understand the constraints that seismic processing places on acquisition design.

Course Outline:

  1. What are reflections and how deep are they?
  2. Poststack and prestack depth migration concepts and restrictions.
  3. Kirchhoff and reverse-time depth migration methods.
  4. Before-stack migration and its predecessor, normal moveout and stack.
  5. Time migration versus depth migration.
  6. Improving signal-to-noise through multiple attenuation and statics determination, frequency filtering and coherency enhancement.
  7. Seismic amplitude correction processes.
  8. Improving resolution through deterministic and statistical deconvolution.
  9. Typical seismic processing sequences.

This outline is almost the inverse of the order of the processing steps. Because each processing step has its own input requirements, understanding those requirements provides the motivation for understanding the each preceding processing step. Quantitative, mathematical procedures inherently comprise seismic processing. By contrast, this course uses cartoons and real data examples to provide an intuitive understanding of the seismic processing procedures.

Course participants will receive a course book that will contain the contents of all overheads, with the exception of examples shown from the Oz Yilmaz classic seismic processing text.

Learner Outcomes:

  1. Estimate depth of seismic reflections under constraints of interval velocity estimation.
  2. Propose poststack or prestack time or depth migration for their data.
  3. Propose Kirchhoff or wave-equation depth migration methods.
  4. Explain the advantages of before-stack migration in contrast to its historical predecessor, normal moveout and stack.
  5. Question the role of noise in confounding an interpretation.
  6. Identify signal-to-noise through multiple attenuation and statics determination, frequency filtering and coherency enhancement.
  7. Question the role of seismic amplitude correction processes as pertains to following interpretation.
  8. Explain the role of deterministic and statistical deconvolution in improving 1D resolution, 2D & 3D resolution through migration.
  9. Appraise seismic acquisition design geometry from processing requirements.
  10. List typical seismic processing sequences.

Instructor Biography:
Steve Hill